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by pdschu on Fri May 03, 2019 12:03 pm
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pdschu
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I recently had a request for a print of mine by a friend for an image of a small bird (Indigo Bunting). She wanted a larger print like 13 x 19. I printed one of the images I had edited and looks good on the screen, but on paper the bird was larger than life size and to my eye looked wrong. Do any of you have a rule of thumb for printing such images so that they look realistic but the bird is still prominent in the photo? Obviously a smaller print size would solve the issue.

Portraits of people can surely by smaller that life size but you rarely see one that is larger unless on a billboard or similar. Never thought about this before as I do not print many images.

I appreciate all opinions.

Thanks.
Paul Schumacher
Schumacher Photography
 

by signgrap on Fri May 03, 2019 4:15 pm
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For the most part print size determines viewing distance.
A larger print can be viewed at a greater distance.
So the person who asked for the print may be displaying it in an area where you can't get close to the print or they just want a larger print so it fills the display area wall or they just like large prints. If it were me I wouldn't worry that the bird appears larger than life. When you do a smaller print of a bird does it matter that the bird is smaller than life size? Why does the size of the bird in the print matter? I do a lot of macro and the prints are always larger than life - I don't give it a second thought. That's part of the fun of photography you can take a photo of something small and make it big so you can study it in detail. Just my perspective.
Dick Ludwig
 

by Richard B. on Sat May 04, 2019 6:53 pm
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OK, opinions are like ..... (make your choice)... everyone has one.

I enjoy photography as a hobby, do my own printing, and also enjoy birds. But even I can not see putting a 36 inch print of a chickadee over my fireplace. A large decorative image of a small bird does not feel right to me. However I would feel differently about a landscape / birdscape where the chickadee is a prominent element of the image. Also a large print of a large bird with some environmental elements would also be more acceptable (to me). OTH, I would give a friend what they asked for. You could always redo it for your friend if needed.

Richard
 

by Scott B on Tue May 07, 2019 10:08 am
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Isn't it interesting that if a bird is enlarged more than 15% or 20% it seems really unnatural but an insect enlarged 100 times looks great. If you are trying to make money and you are good enough and you need to maintain a certain style you can tell the client what they want keep it life sized. If you are trying to make money and like 99.999% of photographers need any penny you can make give he client what they want. If you are just doing it for a friend and they like big bird, let them have and celebrate it with them that is what friends do.
 

by Primus on Sun Jun 09, 2019 4:23 pm
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Scott B wrote:
Isn't it interesting that if a bird is enlarged more than 15% or 20% it seems really unnatural but an insect enlarged 100 times looks great.  If you are trying to make money and you are good enough  and you need to maintain a certain style you can tell the client what they want keep it life sized.  If you are trying to make money  and like 99.999% of photographers need any penny you can make give he client what they want.  If you are just doing it for a friend and they like big bird, let them have and celebrate it with them that is what friends do.



I just printed two 24"x36" images for my office. One is a pied kingfisher and the other a reed cormorant.

Both were taken in Botswana last yr. I converted them to B&W, made them 'high-key' so the background is completely blown out. Hung them side-by-side in vertical format. 

The birds are in profile and looking at each other on the wall. Obviously to somebody who knows the real size of the birds it looks unnatural, since they both almost completely fill the frame, yet the kingfisher is much smaller in reality (less than half its size). However, it seems to work and I have received numerous compliments from people coming into the office. 

I simply love printing large and it seems that even when viewed from a close distance it does not matter so much. For me the impact of a large print is, pun intended, huge. 

BTW, both of my bird images are heavily cropped. Originally 4000x6000px (Sony A9), the kingfisher is only 1600x2400 px and the cormorant is 2400x3600 and yet they both look sharp enough at 24x36 inches even when viewed from three feet away. I use QImage to print and it extrapolates the images beautifully.

So for me at least, the subject does not matter much. Everyone has different tastes I suppose.

Pradeep
 

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